Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Kerosene, Sardines, Jim Beam and the Great Bettendorf Flood of 2008
Friday night I started piecing together the mottled and tragic history of the donor bike which had come into my possession. It had every conceivable chrome doo-dad that Harley Davidson ever devised installed on it. I removed them one by one, stacking them on the work bench, destined for the swap meet circuit. After pulling the gas tank and removing the petcock a foul stream of rust, old gas and what looked like a school of minnows and a crayfish spilled out onto the gravel lot behind the Monastery. Removed the air cleaner and found the filter plugged with vegetation. Perplexing.
I chugged some bourbon and NyQuil, scratched my head and pondered the history of this wretched orphan. I bought the bike on a used car lot, the guy knew only that it had a rebuilt title and was sold through an insurance company. The bike didn't look like it had ever been wrecked, so I was never sure what the story was.
The night wore on, the weed and kerosene burned and the bottle slowly drained. While dining on crackers and canned Dollar Store sardines, I looked down through the haze and noticed the inscription on the oil cap. It read, Weiblers Harley-Davidson Bettendorf Iowa. I vaguely remembered something about Bettendorf Iowa in the news. After a quick Google search, I had my eureka moment. There was a huge flood in Bettendorf in 2008. That's why this bike was sold by the insurance company, it had been drowned like a rat!
Sardines, Saltines, Kerosene and Jim Beam:
Food to nourish the soul and open the mind to life's mysteries.